New Detroit-based app aims to bridge digital and real-life emotional gaps

Inpathy is an up-and-coming app with a mission to help users connect better. The app is founded by Ziarekenya Smith of Detroit. (Provided by Ziarekenya Smith)

A Detroit entrepreneur is getting ready to launch an app that will give people new ways to connect.

Inpathy is a mood-tracking app with a mission to enhance mental health. Founded by Ziarekenya Smith, Inpathy enables users to log in and share their emotions with friends and family – fostering a supportive community.

Smith, drawing from his personal mental health journey, developed Inpathy to "bridge the emotional disconnection prevalent in today's digital world, and lack of transparency and vulnerability in real-life conversations among people you care about," he said. 

The app features 15 pre-set emotions, allowing users to easily express their feelings and receive real-time support from their loved ones. This feature aims to fill emotional gaps that may be left by traditional social media and real-life conversation, according to Smith.

The Inpathy app has 15 pre-programmed emotions to help users express their feelings better and communicate with their loved ones. (Provided by Ziarekenya Smith)

As they prepare for the app's release this summer, Inpathy conducted a "Humans Series" to engage Gen Z in honest conversations about mental health and the impact of social media. Hosted by Kathryn Pierre, the co-founder of Inpathy, the dialogues were held on college campuses with the goal of reducing the stigma surrounding mental health and encouraging open discussions.

Smith said Inpathy is looking to launch in the summer on Apple devices, with an Android version to follow if development goes well. 

After participating in Techstars Detroit powered by JP Morgan, an accelerator program that provides various resources to minority entrepreneurs, Smith teamed up with 2023 cohort alumnus and fellow Detroit native, Averett Barksdale, to further develop the Inpathy app. Barksdale is also the founder of Cashpool – a trading marketplace.

Inpathy was named one of the top 100 high-growth tech companies founded by Black entrepreneurs in 2024 by The Black Tech Effect. 

Future plans include expanding features and partnering with healthcare providers to enhance mental health support, Smith said.

For more information and updates on its release, visit the Inpathy website and/or follow them on social media.